Lineup breakdown: Cards-Pirates, Game 2
A look at today's starting lineups for Game 2 of the National League Division Series between the Cardinals and the Pirates:
1. Matt Carpenter, 2B -- Carpenter was 1-for-5 in Game 1, but during the regular season, he hit .360 at home and .329 versus right-handed pitching. Both stats bode well for the Cards as they look to grab a 2-0 lead in the series.
2. Carlos Beltran, RF -- Beltran had only one of the Cardinals' 10 hits in Game 1, but it was a big one. His three-run homer set the tone for the St. Louis offense and made history in the process, as he tied Babe Ruth for eighth all-time with 15 postseason home runs.
3. Matt Holliday, LF -- Holliday is already halfway to his hit total from the entire 2012 NLDS (4-for-21) with his 2-for-4 night in Game 1. The Cards need continued production from Holliday to propel forward in the playoffs.
4. Matt Adams, 1B -- Adams and Cole should be a great power-versus-power matchup of two young stars in the making. Adams hit .295 against right-handers in the regular season as opposed to .231 against lefties.
5. Yadier Molina, C -- Molina's importance behind the plate will be magnified, as he catches Lance Lynn, who has only made two career postseason starts.
6. Jon Jay, CF -- Jay came into Game 1 with a .185 career postseason batting average, but he showed good patience at the plate Thursday night, singling but also drawing two walks and scoring twice. That's the type of hitter Cards manager Mike Matheny would like to see this month.
7. David Freese, 3B -- Freese has proven his postseason mettle over the last two seasons, and he showed no signs of slowing down in Game 1, going 2-for-4 with two RBIs to up his career playoff batting average to .351.
8. Daniel Descalso, SS -- Descalso was the only starting position player without a hit in the Cardinals' 9-1 victory in Game 1, dropping his career postseason batting average to .233 (14-for-60).
9. Lance Lynn, SP -- Lynn will be making his third career postseason start. He's struggled against the Pirates this season, particularly in his last two outings (10.61 ERA), but has pitched well at home (2.82 ERA versus 5.15 ERA away from Busch Stadium).
1. Starling Marte, LF -- The Bucs' leadoff man was 0-for-4 in Game 1 with two strikeouts. Pittsburgh will need the 24-year-old to find ways to get on base to set the tone for an offense that struggled Thursday.
2. Neil Walker, 2B -- Walker's second career postseason game didn't go anything like his first. After a 2-for-5 night with an RBI in the NL Wild Card Game, he went 0-for-4 in the two-hole Thursday, combining with Marte to go 0-for-8 at the top of the order.
3. Andrew McCutchen, CF -- McCutchen paced the Pirates with two hits Thursday, but is 4-for-26 (.154) with 10 strikeouts lifetime against Lynn.
4. Justin Morneau, 1B -- Including Monday night, Morneau is 0-for-10 with a walk in three career games at Busch Stadium.
5. Marlon Byrd, RF -- Byrd is 2-for-6 lifetime against Lynn, with a double. He hopes that history will carry over to Game 2 after an 0-for-3 night Thursday with two strikeouts.
6. Pedro Alvarez, 3B -- Alvarez gave the Bucs their only run in Game 1 with a solo homer, and three of his five career hits against Lynn have been of the extra-base variety (two doubles and a home run in 21 at-bats).
7. Russell Martin, C -- With rookie right-hander Gerrit Cole making his first career postseason start, Martin will have the task of making sure the 23-year-old stays composed and focused.
8. Jordy Mercer, SS -- With Clint Barmes going 1-for-6 so far this postseason (dropping his career playoff average to .050), Bucs manager Clint Hurdle hopes Mercer -- who hit .285 with 22 doubles in 333 regular season at-bats -- can provide an offensive spark.
9. Gerrit Cole, SP -- Cole will take the mound in a postseason game for the first time, hoping to continue his success on the road. He's never faced the Cardinals, nor pitched at Busch Stadium, but posted a 2.38 ERA in seven road starts this season.